Culturally, the influence of the princely order on society, art, and architecture, and the spirit of the land’s hardy, colorful folk have been responsible for Rajputana’s high ranking on the tourism index. It helps that the state’s former nobility has converted innumerable dwellings, from small mansions to spectacular palaces, into heritage hotels and resorts.
Visitors from outside India ‘do’ Rajasthan either at a frantic pace, touching as many points as possible—there are four to five main cities and many dozens of small thikanas (fiefdoms) and wildlife reserves—or bouncing in and out of Jaipur, one of the three points of India’s famed Golden Triangle circuit. Our itinerary is different. We tie the southern city of Udaipur, picturesque and graceful, to the western city of Jodhpur, masculine and earthy, with a 300-odd-km meandering road journey—with a slow train traverse sneaked in—over several days, selectively sprinkled with experiences that will leave you charmed and enriched.